American Bushman

"If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing." —Benjamin Franklin

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Working it Out

Sometimes you've got to feel worse before you can feel better.

I've given up snacks, beer, and coffee in my quest for a better life and better fitness. The beer and coffee I'll reintroduce later (maybe) but the snacks needed to go for quite some time.

I'm still doing my morning exercises and notice muscles where there haven't been muscles in quite some time but they're still well hidden and insulated. I'm sleeping more.

Strangely I feel terrible. I think it's been three days since my last cup of coffee and I suspect the caffeine withdrawl has something to do with the problems. My head hurts, it's hard to concentrate, my stomach feels a bit upset...good stuff. I've also heard that I'm a bit cranky. Who? Me?! :)

Understand that I'm a hard-core coffee geek and drink espresso all day long and I quit it cold turkey.

I think this is a passing phase and, frankly, the sooner it passes the better.

What does any of this have to do with bushcraft, the outdoors, or gear? It's a lesson in what goes on inside the body chemically when something that's been a regular part of one's diet is suddenly removed. It's also a chance to see just how little a person can consume in a situation where rationing is necessary and still feel like the wolves aren't at the door.

Hunger is a strong motivator. Let's see what I can do with a little motivation...

Thanks for reading,



At 3:28 PM, Blogger Pablo said...

Stick at it Bri. I've heard drinking plenty of water helps. Yum.

At 10:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

good luck man.... i know how it goes... i need to get back on my bike a.s.a.p... i just the okay from the doc.. i haven't ridden sice august 07, due to this stinking knee injury/surgery...

mtnfolk mike t

At 9:27 AM, Anonymous Wildcat said...

I did all this about 6 months ago. The coffee withdrawls will last about a week.

I cut my food portions WAY back and started running and fast walking with a pack. I dropped 40 pounds in 3 months. Americans eat WAY more food than is needed to sustain life. Next you can try fasting. Do some research on it. Interesting. It is tough though. I made 24 hours and felt horrible by the end of the day, and i sit at a desk all day. It may be a little harder for you since you have the kids with you alot and that takes some energy in itself. But it is good to know the stages of fasting since that could be a real situation in the bush unless you are REAL confident in your plant identification.


At 11:08 AM, Anonymous said...

AB, kudos for your efforts. I've been a hard core strength trainer for 8 or ten years now. The symptoms you describe - both mental and physical - can also result from over training.

Over training, that is exercising too much, is especially common among people who are just starting out. The key is balance, to read how your body and mind is feeling day to day and adjust your exercise accordingly.

Another thing people often don't realize is that physical gains from exercise occur during the recovery period which lasts one to three days AFTER the exercise. During this time you can actually make yourself weaker by exercising that body part more.

For example, take benchpressing with weights. If you benchpress as hard as you can every day for several months you will be end up weaker than if you did it just every third day, with two days of rest in between. Also, you may find yourself become moody and even lethargic as your body becomes overstressed.

That is because it is actually the recovery phase where your body becomes stronger. If you do not give the body a chance to recover and build muscle,tendons,blood vessels etc in response to the higher demand you are placing upon it, then you are limiting the value of your workouts.


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